The 34th ASEAN Business Summit in Bangkok was all about digitalization: Fintech, eCommerce, eTrade, eGovernment. ASEAN’s decision-makers have realized that a new digital era has begun.
Digital technologies bring an abundance of opportunities. According to an estimate by AT Kearney, digital integration could generate a $1 trillion increase in ASEAN GDP by 2025 – today, ASEAN’s digital economy generates about $150 billion in annual revenue.
ASEAN to become a digital powerhouse by 2025
ASEAN still lags behind its global peers in terms of digitalization, but it has the potential to enter the top five digital economies in the world by 2025, according to AT Kearney. By 2025, the majority of ASEAN’s citizens will become digital natives using a variety of digital tools to improve their personal and professional lives.
ASEAN-based businesses have started to integrate “Industry 4.0” technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics, or blockchain. Those technologies enable greater interconnectivity, boost efficiency and productivity, and increase flexibility and customization.
Significant trends in the digital economy such as the emergence of a multiple screen environment, social media networks, growth in big data and augmented reality, personalized advertising, and the use of the cloud will drive a CAGR of 50 to 60 per cent in data traffic in the coming years.
Governments are contributing to ASEAN’s digital future by creating favourable legislation and launching digital initiatives.
One of the cornerstones of ASEAN collaboration in the digital sphere is the ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN). The primary goal of the ASCN is to improve urban life using digital technologies as an enabler. The project currently includes 26 pilot cities.
Another significant achievement was ASEAN’s first e-commerce agreement, signed in 2018, which aims at further boosting e-commerce as a driver of regional economic growth.
ASEAN’s strong and growing economies, favourable demographics, and the ongoing economic and political integration have laid the foundation for the region to become a digital leader.
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